Not Updated For Current Season
The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.
Threats to Irelia with this build
|Dr. Mundo||Farm lane. Max W and just try to keep up with him in tankiness after tri-force.|
|Fiora||Another easy matchup. Fiora does have her Reposte, but you have a 2 second stun. Max E so that you can auto her once or twice with W while she is stunned. Whenever your combo is up (E-W-AA-AA-Q) and you can ensure a stun, always do it, and she won't survive the level 6. It's an easy matchup. Just make sure you land the stun. Rush Sheen. Max E|
|Gangplank||Easy matchup if you don't take too much harass level 1-3. Rush sheen and make sure to land stun. Max E|
|Gnar||You're probably one of the few champions that can fight him as Mega Gnar. You destroy him as mini also. Just Q onto a minion and do your combo.|
|Jayce||Jayce is horrible against gap closers and since he won't resist harassing you, you'll always be able to stun him. Just max E and rush Sheen. Q onto a minion and stun him, then after he knocks you back, just Q onto him again and destroy him.|
|Riven||Easy matchup. You actually outdamage her greatly level 1 if you take a point in W. Most Riven's will take ignite so be careful level 6. Just use your E to stun and harass her when she tries to jump in on you. You're tankier and deal more damage. You also have superior sustain. Just don't get cheesed level 6. Easy matchup in my opinion though. Max E rush Sheen|
|Shen||Since he'll harass you with Qs, you'll always be able to stun him and deal damage. Once he gets tanky though, it's useless to try and fight him. Only chance to kill him is level 1-6. Max W rush Sheen.|
|Yasuo||Easy matchup. Just don't die level's 1 or 2 and you're good. Max E and make him suffer when he tries to chunk you. Max E rush Sheen. Matchup Guide: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n5-YzIIN4f0|
|Zed||Save your Q for when he shadows away and Max E. I say that because after level 4, he can't outdamage you. Don't take too much harass from his shadow combo and it'll be easy. Zed isn't meant for top lane. Max E rush Sheen|
|Rengar||If you don't die to Rengar level's 1-3 then you will dominate the lane. Max E and once you hit level 4, stun him, activate W, and just chunk him for half health. I recently played this matchup and Rengar stood no chance. He took ignite, so at level 4 when I chunked him down, he had to recall and miss waves, as he returned, I combo'd again and he stayed, thus leading to me killing him thereafter. Max E, rush Sheen|
|Ekko||Ekko is a Mage-Melee-Assassin... Irelia is a nightmare for him. At level 3, Q onto a minion, stun him, and chunk him. He's too squishy to do a full combo. He'll immediately dash away as you jump him, and that's fine. You've dealt damage and will make him play passive. Once he gets 2-3 items, he'll be strong, but as you get to 2-3 items, you'll be tanky and have your 2 second stun. Max E and dash to minions to avoid his AOE stun if you have to. From what I hear, he's about to get nerfed too. He does not belong in the top lane, he belongs in mid. Easy matchup. Max E, rush Tri|
|Aurelion Sol||You can use your mobility to dodge his, and that's his ultimate weakness. Feel free to all in him level's 4, 5, and 6. Max Q.|
Hi, my name is AJ Sanchez (twitch.tv/flexpointlol) and I am a Diamond V Top main [FlexpointLoL]. This is my 3rd guide. I got placed in Gold V and feel that Irelia was a main part in my climbing to Diamond V. She has superior sustain to most top laners, hard CC, and great burst early. I hope that I can shed some light in her mechanics and how to use her so that she can carry you to higher tiers as well.
Irelia's early game isn't too bad. She is squishy, but if you correctly brawl with your opponent around level's 2-4, your opponent will think twice before doing it again, and respect your early game. She starts to get going levels 4-9 (depending on matchup), and specifically, her level 5, 7, and 9 are, in my opinion, the best in the game.
Even if you go even in lane, Irelia's power spike at level's 7 and 9 are insane.
As Irelia, post-9, you'll be wanted to find some roams because Irelia is the Queen of mid-game. Mid game, once you finish tri-force, is the time where you can start 2v1 champions. Even if you're just 1-0 or 2-0, you dominate the mid game.
Irelia isn't much of a split pusher, so after you take tower, you really want to start getting a roam going and helping out with objectives.
In the waaaaaaaaay late game Irelia will start to fall off, so it is imperative you take advantage of your dominance early.
Pros / Cons
High Burst at Sheen
Amazing Tenacity with her Passive
Can take Jungle Camp level 1
Must dive into teams to deal damage
Taunt (People don't like Irelia and you will be focused)
Frozen Heart (Yeah, if this item is built, it hurts you)
Needs items for Powerspike
WHAT TO DO LEVEL 1
YOU WALK INTO LANE LEVEL 1. DO NOT TAKE A JUNGLE CAMP. IT IS NOT WORTH IT ANYMORE!
This is standard against AD top laner. If against an AP top laner, you'll switch out your Armor Quints for Health Quints, and use flat Magic Resist instead of scaling and swap your seals from health to Scaling Armor.
You'll notice that I go all Attack damage now because of the recent buffs to Irelia's Q Bladesurge. I now value that extra AD much higher than the extra attack speed.
For AP top laners, chances are that they will be squishy, so the added health will be a CLEAR advantage in lane and will be supplemented well by the Mercury's Treads
Flash and Teleport
Teleport has been nerfed, but I still feel that it's essential for establishing lane dominance. Add that to the ability to affect other laners, I believe teleport outclasses ignite.
If you manage to get a kill vs a Riven, Renekton, Darius and play extremely defensive, I would suggest buying a Warden's Mail on your FIRST recall then proceed to buy your Trinity Force. An early WM is DEVASTATING vs those champions. They will deal minimized damage to you.
If against AP champs, Spirit Visage as a second item can be very strong and make it hard to deal with you. Banshee's is more towards safety from Spellcasters as are Merc Treads. Another option, due to its recent buffs, is Mercurial Scimitar
I've recently grown fond of Sterak's Gage due to it allowing you to be VERY FORGIVING when diving carries in the back line and you get into a tight spot where you are tanking a lot. If you are against champions with quick strong burst like Darius, Riven, Veigar who has grown popular, Viktor, Yasuo, etc etc, Sterak's can be invaluable in tanking damage for you teammates.
I added Wit's End here because I consider that item more on the offensive scale rather defensive due to its combat stats and how valuable they are to Irelia's kit. Mercurial Scimitar IS NOT an essential item, but it is still very strong to get on Irelia due to the combat stats it provides.
Max E or W?
Farming with Irelia is extremely simple. If you are not comfortable with Auto-Attacking a minion from fear of harass from your enemy, simply use your Q to last hit. Beware, it costs mana, and if you are not smart, you won't have enough mana to all-in level 6. If you want more help, activate your W and use the bonus true damage, although I suggest you only use that to sustain back.
Always use your E to stun. It's completely wasted if it's used to slow [IN LANE].
During team fights, slowing the carry is effective, so that's the only exception.
If you need to, stun your opponent after you cs so that he can't harass you, but if you stun then, you'll want to auto-attack him 1-2 times with your W active.
A tip to gap-close:
Sometimes, I'll auto a minion in the back of the wave and inteantionally leave it alive with 100 health so that if the enemy walks near it, I can Q to the minion and brawl.
NEVER JUST Q ONTO A ENEMY CHAMPION unless YOU ARE FINISHING YOUR HARASS COMBO.
Combo with ult
Creeping / Jungling
I firmly believe that as a laner [Carry], you should have AT LEAST 50 Jungle Creeps per game. Once Irelia has Tri-Force, she melts jungle camps. Just stun the big Monster and proc your Tri-Force.
50 Jungle Creeps
Similar to Lee Sin, Maokai, Master Yi, Xin Zhao, and others, Irelia has a form of dash with her Q, meaning, with vision, she can dash to minions or enemy's OVER WALLS.
Knowing that, always remember that and keep a ward handy. If you happen to get ganked or jumped in/near the jungle, pop a ward on a camp and Q onto it. You don't necessarily have to kill it, but as long as you escape, you're good.
A nice tip to remember,
If you have Tri-Force, you can WQ a small Raptor and kill it giving you the reset.
Here you can see how I use my Q (Dash) to avoid Yasuo knockup and keep him from ulting me.
Irelia having a reset on kill Dash ability is very useful not only for chasing or executing, but for engaging as well. If both teams are staring down in the mid lane ready to fight and you're bored of waiting, as a enemy minion wave approach you, you can use your ultimate to lower the health of the minions in the back, Dash and Kill that minion, and dash to the enemy ADC to engage. You have to get creative with your abilities, and that's one way to do so.
If you have Tri-Force and maxed your W, you'll be able to dash to a backline minion and kill it without having to attack it before-hand. So just WQ the backline minion and then Dash onto the carry. You're goal is to kill any carries on sight. Leave the peeling to the support. Once you get your Randuin's Omen, Guardian Angel, and Spirit Visage, you're secondary goal is to soak damage, but always remember to kill the carries.
In ranked always stand in riven to watch for the invade. Taking a camp level 1 is no longer viable.
In conclusion, Irelia is a FORCE for over 50% of a total average match time which is arguably the best out of all the champions. You get power spikes at Sheen, and Tri-force. In almost every scenario, I'll say to rush Sheen, but if you feel that you can outdamage your lane going defensive, such as rushing Ninja Tabi or Giant's Belt, by all means, do it. Just remember, don't stay top lane too long, and make sure your team follows up with you.
Irelia has carried me to where I am now, and I am positive she'll help you :)
Good luck on the Rift, everyone.
Thank you very much for taking the time to see my guide.
-AJ Sanchez (Flexpoint)
6/19/2015 - After talking to multiple high elo top lane players [Quas, Dyrus, Calitrololz8) I've edited that Frozen Heart becomes a situational item rather than ESSENTIAL. Previously, I stated that it's essential.
6/22/2015 - After ~10 [Recent] games of Irelia vs Magic Damage champs, I have concluded that Tri-Force IS NOT a must buy, and that it is effective to go BTRK into Wit's End to start. (IRELIA BUILD VS HEAVY MAGIC DAMAGE)
7/05/2015 - Changed the "Assassin Irelia" to "Snowballing" and edited the build path.
321k views, HYPE!
190k views! Thank you for the support! <3
236k views: Again, Thank you!
9/4/2015 - Added Dead Man's Plate to the build path
733k views, wow, thank you all for the support.
10/07/2015 - Added Sterak's Gage into the build orders.
Almost 900k views! Let's get there!
11/16/2015 - Edited for Preseason 6 | Patch 5.22. ENJOY
Let's get to 1 million views
4/12/2016 - Edited for Patch 6.7. Irelia got buffed!! :D We hit 1 million views by the way, thank you guys!